Chapter 1img Heiki: Equanimity

Your boss just tapped you on the shoulder and said, “Hey—you got a minute? We need to talk for a second….”

What runs through your mind when you hear those words? Does your heart start to race? Do you start imagining disaster scenarios? Counting up all your past sins? Do you think to yourself, “Oh, no, here we go again”?

Any of these responses would be perfectly natural—but none of them are particularly helpful. You know that you don't do your best thinking when panicking. You know that you can't have a healthy, helpful conversation with your boss, colleague, or loved one when you've got your hackles up. But what's the alternative? How can you escape the trap set by your own nervous system?

There Is Another Way

The alternative is a state of mind and body known as heiki. It's a calmness under duress that you can practice deliberately—when you're triggered ...

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